Sfakia report, April 22nd – the epitaphios, Sfakia report, coastal road east Everything you want to ask, read or write about Sfakia, southwest Crete, or Crete island in general.

jean h
Posts: 106
Joined: 15 Sep 2020, 21:28

Sfakia report, April 22nd – the epitaphios, Sfakia report, coastal road east

by jean h » 23 Apr 2022, 06:39

It was Great Friday, and some of us went up to the main church in Mesohori in the morning to see the young women decorating the epitaphios with flowers for the procession in the evening. An icon of Christ is placed on the wooden structure and carried through the village by 4 strong young men, followed by villagers holding candles after the church service. The epitaphios stops at each business along the front, and people kiss the icon. The procession ends up at the main church behind the sea front, when the men hoist the heavy epitaphios up on their shoulders so people enter the church by walking under it for the service.

epitaphios, morning service.JPG

epitaphios, evening service.JPG


Lambs were being skinned and prepared for Easter roasting on the spit (vegetarians should skip this photo…)

lamb carcasses.JPG


In the late morning Wiltrud drove us east to Agia Marina, below Skaloti, where you get a view all the way to Plakias. The dirt track leading down to the beach has been smoothed out very well this year, so she decided to drive down. While crossing the flowing stream at the bottom, we flushed out a squacco heron. There were two German campervans parked under trees on Agia Marina beach, with their occupants enjoying the peaceful atmosphere.

Agia Marina.JPG


The cafe around the corner on the next beach was closed, so we drove along the stone and sand track at the back of the beach (there were two very bad spots to negotiate) to Peristere beach at the other end, where workers were cleaning that taverna in preparation for opening. This is the spot where the kidnapped German general Kreipe was removed from Crete by boat during WWII. There was a large patch of the tiny blue and white Solenopsis minuta near the beach.

beach road.JPG

Solenopsis minuta.JPG


The road turns inland around the small rocky headland then back down to the coast at the resort of Polyrizo, which seemed quite lively with tourists, and continues to Korakas beach below Rodakino. From there on we were on new territory, as the coast road has now been asphalted (it was impassible at places the last time we tried). The view along this wild stretch of coast are gorgeous - there are wide views over to Plakias bay and the mountains where Moni Preveli is located, around to the the Paximadia islands, and huge rocky formations, but very few buildings. Once you round Cape Stavros, you can see Souda beach and tourist development below. Instead of following the coastal road into Plakias we cut up to Sellia, and then drove back along the main road, looking down on the Cape and road we had just driven along.

view from Cape Stavros.JPG

Souda beach.JPG

Cape Stavros.JPG


Back in Sfakia, there were a lot of small boats and taxi boats zipping back and forth to Loutro, and probably also Finix and Lykos, as Greek families arrived for their Easter holidays.
Last edited by jean h on 24 Apr 2022, 20:14, edited 1 time in total.

Marie and Andrew
Posts: 144
Joined: 26 Nov 2015, 20:29
Location: Sweden

Re: Sfakia report, April 22nd – the epitaphios, Sfakia report, coastal road east

by Marie and Andrew » 23 Apr 2022, 20:02

Hello Jean,
Thanks for sharing your wonderful adventure together with Wiltrud. You have described a few places we have not been to yet. Which we are looking forward to on future visits. It sounds like the council have continued with the road improvements with they started with 2020 during covid-19 when we were there. Hope you and Peter enjoy the Easter celebrations.

Best regards
Marie and Andrew

jean h
Posts: 106
Joined: 15 Sep 2020, 21:28

Re: Sfakia report, April 22nd – the epitaphios, Sfakia report, coastal road east

by jean h » 24 Apr 2022, 20:20

Marie and Andrew wrote:Hello Jean,
Thanks for sharing your wonderful adventure together with Wiltrud. You have described a few places we have not been to yet. Which we are looking forward to on future visits. It sounds like the council have continued with the road improvements with they started with 2020 during covid-19 when we were there. Hope you and Peter enjoy the Easter celebrations.

Best regards
Marie and Andrew


The newly-paved coastal road was mainly paid for by the EU

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